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Soybean || Cocoa || Agribusiness: Applying The Basic Enjoying Consumers’ Open Embrace || M2m Technology Driving Agriculture’s Industrialization || Why Chinese Agriculture Engagement In Africa Is Not What It Seems || World Bank to Support Nigeria's Agricultural Sector With $200 Million || 2nd Cassava World Africa || Agripreneurs in Africa gather for first-ever youth agribusiness forum || Building Sustainable Youth Agribusinesses || Test 1 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 5 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 6 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 7 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 8 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 9 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 11 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 10 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Test 13 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur || Huge opportunities for agricultural growth in West Africa || Huge opportunities for agricultural growth in West Africa || Test 12 - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur ||

Featured Articles

Agripreneurs in Africa gather for first-ever youth agribusiness forum
By David Jonathan Featured in FarmAfriQue,Nigeria,IITA,Agriculture,Africa,AgriBusiness-2017-04-24 12:52:11

Youth from all over Africa will come together in the first-ever African Youth Agripreneurs (AYA) Forum in Ibadan, Nigeria, on 25-26 April 2017. The forum provides an opportunity for the youth to show their skills, creativity, and innovativeness in agribusiness, and also relate with other youths, development partners, and stakeholders in the sector.

The forum, hosted by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) at its headquarters, is organized by the African Development Bank (AfDB) in collaboration with IITA, the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), the Africa Agribusiness Incubation Network (AAIN) and Africa 2.0. The forum will serve as a platform for aggregating Agripreneurs across Africa and escalating the impact of their activities on agriculture and development in the continent.

The AYA Forum is targeted at over 200 youths in Africa who are active in agribusiness or the agriculture sector or related value chains, promoting their own innovation for increased production and marketing, who are currently members in a youth network or association, possess skills to share and disseminate agribusiness information and knowledge, and also have the potential of being a youth mentor and/or incubate through incubation activities.

The forum comprises a 2-day conference/workshop with thematic discussions and presentations of success stories, an AgriPitch Entrepreneurship Competition and side events including a mentor and incubator training program that will give Agripreneurs an opportunity to demonstrate and showcase the success and business potential of agribusinesses across Africa.

During the agriPitch entrepreneurship competition, participants between the ages of 18-35 will pitch their innovations before their peers after which prizes will be awarded to three categories of winners. The selected winners will be invited to AfDB’s annual meetings in India in May 2017 to present their pitches. The overall winner will be presented with a prize by AfDB President Akinwumi Adesina.

During the forum, the agripreneurs are expected to develop and pitch ideas on innovations in agriculture which could cover information and communication technology (ICT), production, harvesting and processing, marketing, logistics, research, and financial services, among many other topics.

Also during the workshop, there will be plenary presentations by the youth and to the youth, to showcase how they designed solutions addressing the typical challenges facing young people who have ventured into agribusiness.

The forum will give agripreneurs across Africa an opportunity to interact and connect with business and development organizations that could assist in linkages with potential markets as off-takers within and outside Africa.

“IITA will support initiatives that would ensure that the young people in this continent contribute to the transformation of African agriculture through agribusiness and value chain development,” says IITA Director General Nteranya Sanginga.

“The AYA Forum will become a flagship element of AfDB’s key initiative for youth employment in agriculture, the ENABLE Youth Program –Empowering Novel Agri-Business-Led Employment,” comments Chiji Ojukwu, AfDB’s Agriculture and Agro-Industry Director. This 5-year program funded and being championed by AfDB aims to develop the next generation of African entrepreneurs in agriculture. Its overall goal is to contribute to job creation, food security and nutrition, rural income generation, and improved livelihoods for youths in both urban and rural areas.

The AYA Forum will also highlight the collaboration and partnership with key institutions like IITA, AAIN, CTA, and others.

Event hashtag: #AgriPitch2017  

Source: IITA

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World Bank to Support Nigeria's Agricultural Sector With $200 Million
By David Jonathan Featured in FarmAfriQue,Nigeria,WorldBank,Agriculture,Africa-2017-04-24 10:46:55

The World Bank is set to inject $200 million into Nigeria's agricultural sector, PREMIUM TIMES has gathered.

Adetunji Oredipe, World Bank's Fadama Team Leader, who disclosed this on Wednesday, said the fund is meant to revitalise the nation's livestock sub-sector. Fadama is a Hausa word that generally means irrigable land.

Mr. Oredipe said that the World Bank was working in tandem with the Nigerian government to formulate the intervention policy, adding that discussions with the government team on the modalities for the project execution had also started.

He however said the intervention will give special attention to productivity.

 

"Productivity depends on a number of factors as it concerns the feeds which are very critical; the major problem of livestock production in the country is dearth of high-quality animal feeds, as the feeds determine what you get from your livestock," he noted.

"World Bank is also looking at critical health aspects of the livestock industry, the veterinary aspects, as we are merging it with the surveillance."

Commenting further, Mr. Oredipe said that the World Bank had approved $25 million to revamp the animal health sector.

He explained that the funds would be released via a World Bank regional project, adding that more than $90 million had been earmarked for Nigeria.

 

"The initial $25 million has been approved by the bank, and the project will take off as soon as the Federal government sorts out the issue with the National Assembly," he said.

Mr. Oredipe, according to the News Agency of Nigeria, also disclosed that the bank was making available a $2.1-million grant to examine and develop the business environment in the livestock sub-sector, adding that the reform programme would be executed under the Livestock Micro Reforms Project.

 

According to the FADAMA team lead, the World Bank and government officials were now looking at the policy and business environment, with a view to perfecting them for the intervention.

He said that the World Bank's focus on the livestock sub-sector was based on the request of President Muhammadu Buhari's administration.

He said, "The administration made it clear that they want the bank to critically look into the livestock sector because not much is going on in that sector."

The livestock sub-sector accounted for a sizeable part of Nigeria's Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Mr. Oredipe said; adding that it provides income, employment, food, farm energy, manure, fuel and transport.

The FADAMA boss also noted that the livestock sub-sector was a major source of government revenue in the past, and the government was putting efforts in place to put it in good shape.

 

Source; Premium Times

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Why Chinese Agriculture Engagement In Africa Is Not What It Seems
By David Jonathan Featured in -2016-05-24 08:20:29

The Western and African media have long fueled the myth that Chinese investors are buying up vast tracts of land across Africa as part of a neo-colonial plan to export food back to China. Sure, on one level, the theory appears plausible: China has around 20 percent of the world’s population with less than seven percent of the planet’s arable land, so it seems obvious that Beijing might look abroad in search of farmland to feed its people. There’s only one small problem. That premise, no matter how convincing it may sound, is just flat-out wrong.

Chinese machines at a Chinese-owned peanut warehouse in the central Senegalese village of Dinguiraye, February 23, 2013. Peanut farming has brought wealth to Senegalese farmers, who have been selling their crop for higher prices to Chinese exporters while local oil producers speak of unfair competition.

Johns Hopkins University professor Deborah Brautigam detailed all of the reasons why this myth remains so durable in her 2015 book Will Africa Feed China? A lot of it, according to Brautigam, has to do with a mix of bad journalism, Western narratives of African victimization, and the Chinese themselves who oversell their ambitions in Africans.

Now, though, there’s a twist to the story. Not only are the Chinese not on a land-buying spree in Africa, it appears they are actually doing more to support African agricultural development than any other country in the world.

Professor Ian Scoones from the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex recently completed a four-country research project on Chinese agricultural engagement in Africa and discovered that the combination of Chinese immigrant farmers in Africa along with the deployment of Chinese agricultural technology and People’s Republic of China government training programs that have brought some 10,000 African officials to China have all had a remarkably positive impact on Africa’s struggling agricultural sector.

Professor Scoones joins Eric and Cobus to discuss why Chinese engagement in African agriculture is not what It seems.

Source Link: https://www.chinafile.com/china-africa-project/why-chinese-agriculture-engagement-africa-not-what-it-seems

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By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

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By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

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By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

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By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

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By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

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Huge opportunities for agricultural growth in West Africa
By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

Huge opportunities for agricultural growth in West Africa

New report sees regional integration as high road to making the most of changing food patterns and dynamic populations

2 July 2015, Rome  - West Africa has unprecedented opportunities for agricultural growth, but making the most of them will require more effective  regional integration, says a new report by the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

To be competitive with large global actors, West African agriculture needs to capture some of the economies of scale that those countries enjoy in the markets for fertilizers and seeds as well as in agricultural research and technology development, adds the report.

While important progress towards regional integration has been made over the past two decades, effective implementation at national level has remained a challenge, as evidenced by roadblocks and trade bans hindering intraregional trade, along with continued use of disparate national standards for seeds and fertilizers despite regionally agreed-upon common protocols.

The report, "Agricultural Growth in West Africa: Market and Policy Drivers" (AGWA), comes at a time of great dynamism in the patterns of food demand in Africa.

West Africa's population, now 300 million, is expected to grow to 490 million by 2030. The subregion is already the most urbanized part of Sub-Saharan Africa, with nearly half the population living in urban centres, and the urban population is projected to continue to grow at a rate of 3.8 percent per year between 2015 and 2030.

That, along with an expanding middle class, is catalysing greater diversity in consumer food demands, with convenience, nutritional quality, food safety and presentation gaining importance alongside affordability. Serving this growing demand provides great opportunities for value addition, job creation, economic integration and diversification and import substitution, says the report.

Many West African countries have been increasingly relying on food imports to meet their burgeoning urban food markets, reflecting the inability of their domestic food value chains to meet the evolving consumer demand in terms of quality, volumes, prices and consistency of supply.

A growing proportion of the West African population is made up of net food buyers who spend large shares of their incomes on food. The only way to ensure these consumers' access to low-priced food while simultaneously enhancing producers' incomes is through raising productivity and efficiency throughout the agrifood system. Achieving these gains in efficiency and productivity requires a more stable and predictable policy environment, refocussing of public investments on the critical building blocks for sustainable long-term growth, and stepping up implementation capacity.

Adding  more value after harvest

The report stresses that while increasing agricultural yields is essential, more attention needs to be placed on the downstream segment of the agrifood system: assembly, storage, processing, wholesaling and retail.

For example, domestic food processing companies often prefer to import raw materials such as fruit juice concentrate, wheat and vegetable oil rather than sourcing them domestically or developing substitutes based on local raw materials because local supply chains are too weak and fragmented to provide them reliably.

Appropriate policies will vary by country and market segment, but broad efforts to upgrade small and medium enterprises in food processing should be a policy priority, along with strengthening the linkages between market-oriented family farms and their organizations with agribusiness of all sizes to enhance access to markets, inputs and support services. Special attention should be placed in supporting women entrepreneurs, who play a key role in the agrifood system from farming through retail, and to youth. 

As the post-harvest segments of the agrifood system grow ever-more important, addressing the varied demands on the system will require going beyond the traditional mandates of Ministries of Agriculture to focus on interconnections among issues as diverse as research, transport investments, trade policies, and nutrition education.

The report contains in-depth analysis highlighting these interconnections. For example, transport prices for farm produce in West Africa are much higher than in other developing regions, hampering intraregional trade and harming producers and consumers alike. Addressing this situation requires a combination of measures ranging from investments in road infrastructure through improved road governance to reforming trucking regulations to instill greater competition.

More public goods, fewer subsidies

Based on a detailed analysis of the drivers and trends shaping the development of West Africa's agrifood system and the system's response so far, the study identifies key implications for policies and agricultural investments. These findings will help inform the deliberations on and new orientations of "ECOWAP-10", ECOWAS' forthcoming update to the current West African agriculture policy, ECOWAP/CAADP. 

Improving the mix of public investments in agriculture in the region is as important as increasing their level, the report finds. It encourages governments to shift spending towards public goods such as roads, reliable electricity supply, research and schooling rather than towards subsidizing private goods such as fertilizer and tractors.

Click here to read full article

Huge opportunities for agricultural growth in West Africa
By Tista Sengupta Featured in Times of India - 2015-12-08 06:43:32

New report sees regional integration as high road to making the most of changing food patterns and dynamic populations

2 July 2015, Rome  - West Africa has unprecedented opportunities for agricultural growth, but making the most of them will require more effective  regional integration, says a new report by the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

To be competitive with large global actors, West African agriculture needs to capture some of the economies of scale that those countries enjoy in the markets for fertilizers and seeds as well as in agricultural research and technology development, adds the report.

While important progress towards regional integration has been made over the past two decades, effective implementation at national level has remained a challenge, as evidenced by roadblocks and trade bans hindering intraregional trade, along with continued use of disparate national standards for seeds and fertilizers despite regionally agreed-upon common protocols.

The report, "Agricultural Growth in West Africa: Market and Policy Drivers" (AGWA), comes at a time of great dynamism in the patterns of food demand in Africa.

West Africa's population, now 300 million, is expected to grow to 490 million by 2030. The subregion is already the most urbanized part of Sub-Saharan Africa, with nearly half the population living in urban centres, and the urban population is projected to continue to grow at a rate of 3.8 percent per year between 2015 and 2030.

That, along with an expanding middle class, is catalysing greater diversity in consumer food demands, with convenience, nutritional quality, food safety and presentation gaining importance alongside affordability. Serving this growing demand provides great opportunities for value addition, job creation, economic integration and diversification and import substitution, says the report.

Many West African countries have been increasingly relying on food imports to meet their burgeoning urban food markets, reflecting the inability of their domestic food value chains to meet the evolving consumer demand in terms of quality, volumes, prices and consistency of supply.

A growing proportion of the West African population is made up of net food buyers who spend large shares of their incomes on food. The only way to ensure these consumers' access to low-priced food while simultaneously enhancing producers' incomes is through raising productivity and efficiency throughout the agrifood system. Achieving these gains in efficiency and productivity requires a more stable and predictable policy environment, refocussing of public investments on the critical building blocks for sustainable long-term growth, and stepping up implementation capacity.

Adding  more value after harvest

The report stresses that while increasing agricultural yields is essential, more attention needs to be placed on the downstream segment of the agrifood system: assembly, storage, processing, wholesaling and retail.

For example, domestic food processing companies often prefer to import raw materials such as fruit juice concentrate, wheat and vegetable oil rather than sourcing them domestically or developing substitutes based on local raw materials because local supply chains are too weak and fragmented to provide them reliably.

Appropriate policies will vary by country and market segment, but broad efforts to upgrade small and medium enterprises in food processing should be a policy priority, along with strengthening the linkages between market-oriented family farms and their organizations with agribusiness of all sizes to enhance access to markets, inputs and support services. Special attention should be placed in supporting women entrepreneurs, who play a key role in the agrifood system from farming through retail, and to youth. 

As the post-harvest segments of the agrifood system grow ever-more important, addressing the varied demands on the system will require going beyond the traditional mandates of Ministries of Agriculture to focus on interconnections among issues as diverse as research, transport investments, trade policies, and nutrition education.

The report contains in-depth analysis highlighting these interconnections. For example, transport prices for farm produce in West Africa are much higher than in other developing regions, hampering intraregional trade and harming producers and consumers alike. Addressing this situation requires a combination of measures ranging from investments in road infrastructure through improved road governance to reforming trucking regulations to instill greater competition.

More public goods, fewer subsidies

Based on a detailed analysis of the drivers and trends shaping the development of West Africa's agrifood system and the system's response so far, the study identifies key implications for policies and agricultural investments. These findings will help inform the deliberations on and new orientations of "ECOWAP-10", ECOWAS' forthcoming update to the current West African agriculture policy, ECOWAP/CAADP. 

Improving the mix of public investments in agriculture in the region is as important as increasing their level, the report finds. It encourages governments to shift spending towards public goods such as roads, reliable electricity supply, research and schooling rather than towards subsidizing private goods such as fertilizer and tractors.

http://www.fao.org/news/story/en/item/284599/icode/

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